Kilty named OW, four repeat in women's freestyle at USMC Junior Nationals

By Richard Immel, USA Wrestling | July 21, 2017, 7:59 p.m. (ET)
Photo: 127-pound champion and Outstanding Wrestler recipient Macey Kilty of Wisconsin. Photo by Richard Immel, USA Wrestling.

Video: Junior Women's Freestyle Nationals Interviews

FARGO, N.D. – With so many stars gracing the Fargodome stage, the women’s freestyle finals at the U.S. Marine Corps Junior Nationals lived up to the billing on Friday evening.

The headliner between Cadet World medalists Ronna Heaton of South Dakota and Macey Kilty of Wisconsin was a fiery war. Heaton was first on the board in the 127-pound finals after a shot clock expired on Kilty. The Wisconsin native responded with two takedowns, one in the first period and one in the second period, to emerge the winner, 4-1.

“At the upper weights, I’ve always had at least one person that’s pushed me in each of these brackets this year, which is really nice. It seemed like last year I didn’t really get a push and it kind of showed at Worlds because I took third. This year, I’ve been getting pushed a lot and I like it,” Kilty said.

Kilty completed a masterful week in Fargo that included a clean sweep of the 127-pound Cadet bracket, plus wins over top-talents Heaton and defending champion Brenda Reyna of Washington in the Junior tournament. She was named outstanding wrestler for both the Cadet and Junior divisions.

Winning her third-straight Junior Nationals title, and fifth overall championship in Fargo, was California talent Gracie Figueroa at 122 pounds. Still yet to lose a match in Fargo, Figueroa ousted Colorado’s Kourtney Boehm with five first-period takedowns, cementing the win with a pin in 2:28.

“I wrestled my matches, just at a little bit of a faster pace. Once I get those takedowns in my transitions to my other moves, I just tried to get those points,” Figueroa noted. “I’m going to Worlds in a bit, so I needed to see what I have to work on. I have to work on my lace and guts.”

Figueroa won her first four bouts by technical fall, and tallied a whopping 53-0 combined score throughout five matches. She was a Cadet World bronze medalist last year and will compete on both the Cadet and Junior World Teams over the next two months.

Two-time Cadet World medalist Alleida Martinez of California won her second Junior Nationals crown with a captivating come-from-behind win against fellow returning champion Cameron Guerin of Washington. Guerin opened up her offense early, jumping out to a 5-0 lead at the break. Martinez stormed back in the second period with a four-point single leg, followed by an inside trip takedown, to win the bout, 6-5.

Minnesota’s Emily Shilson won her second Junior Nationals title in emphatic fashion over rising Illinois talent Genae Sampract at 100 pounds. Shilson took a 6-2 lead to the second period, but Sampract would not back down. She evened things up 6-6 before Shilson struck with a headlock to pin Sampract in 4:44.

It has been quite the week for Shilson as she added her second Cadet Nationals title to go along with her Junior championship. Between her two tournaments, she won eight matches by technical fall and one by pin. Shilson will represent the U.S. at the Cadet World Championships this September.

The fourth woman to repeat was Cadet World Team member Alexandria Liles of Texas at 132 pounds. Liles toughed out a 6-1 decision over Kansas’ Breanna Douglas to win her second Junior title to go along with her Cadet championship from last year.

Things got heated in the 152-pound finals between defending champion Kayla Marano of Georgia and returning Cadet Nationals finalist Alexis Gomez of Illinois. The two women traded takedowns throughout the match, compiling points, with the crucial moment coming with under a minute to go in the second period. Marano was hit for fleeing the hold and Gomez received two points to go up, 8-7. This proved to be the difference in a 9-7 win for Gomez.

Past Cadet Nationals champion Jayden Laurent of Wisconsin added another Fargo stop sign to her resume with an utterly dominant 10-0 win over returning champion and Cadet World bronze medalist Alara Boyd of Indiana at 144 pounds. Laurent recently won gold at the Junior Pan American championships held in Lima, Peru.

Two World Team members clashed in the 106-pound finals with Pennsylvania’s Vayle Baker notching a wild 11-11 criteria win over Ohio’s McKayla Campbell. Baker will compete on her second Cadet World Team this year, while Campbell will do the same on the Junior side.

After falling short in the Junior finals last summer, Washington’s Emma Bruntil found herself on the right side of the scoreboard against Colorado’s Jerzie Estrada at 138 pounds. Bruntil capped off a stellar tournament with a pin in 4:32 over Estrada. Bruntil, this year’s Junior Pan American champion, reeled in four shutout technical falls on her road to the championship match.

Cadet World Team member Alisha Howk of Wisconsin traded blows with Folkstyle Nationals champion Autumn Gordon of Ohio in the 112-pound championship match. In the end, it was Howk coming out on top, 10-8. Howk adds this title to her Cadet Nationals victory from 2015.

At 180 pounds, Marissa Patterson of Kansas locked up a double overhook toss to pin past Cadet Nationals champion Jesse Kirby of Virginia in 1:23.

Adding to the finals session pin count was 225-pound champion Arianna Cobian of California. Cobian controlled all areas against this year’s Cadet Nationals champion Jasmin Clarke, pinning her fellow Californian in 1:56.

Takedown-to-turn was the name of the game for 164-pound champion Sydnee Kimber of Alaska. She executed two such combinations to rattle off 10 points in her decisive 10-4 win over California’s emerging prospect Dymond Guilford.

California’s Alexandra Castillo, a 2016 Junior Nationals finalist, won a close 3-0 contest over Folkstyle Nationals champion Corey Burton in another all-California finals matchup.

California led all states with four women being crowned Junior Nationals champions. Wisconsin was the only other state with multiple champions at three.

The team race was a runaway for perennial power California. The state claimed its eighth-straight and 13th overall Junior Nationals team title with 99 total points, four champions and 22 All-Americans. Wisconsin came in second place with 45 team points, and Washington finished in third place with 44 team points.

Archived matches, complete brackets and match-by-match results from the women’s freestyle Junior Nationals can be found at

July 19-21 at Fargo, N.D.

Team Standings
1. California 99
2. Wisconsin 45
3. Washington 44
4. Illinois 32
5. New York 29
6. Texas 28
7. Colorado 27
8. Kansas 17
8. Pennsylvania 17
10. Virginia 16

Outstanding Wrestler – Macey Kilty (Wisconsin), 127 lbs. champion

Finals Results
100 pounds
1st – Emily Shilson (Minnesota) fall Genae Sampract (Illinois), 4:44
3rd – Angelina Gomez (California) tech. fall Charlie Hamer (Texas), 10-0
5th – Nina Pham (California) tech. fall Caitlyn Walker (Pennsylvania), 10-0
7th – Nichole Moore (Kansas) tech. fall Katalina Bartelt (Florida), 11-0

106 pounds
1st – Vayle Baker (Pennsylvania) dec. McKayla Campbell (Ohio), 11-11
3rd – Katlyn Pizzo (Michigan) tech. fall Brelane Huber (Idaho), 13-2
5th – Felicity Taylor (Iowa) tech. fall Jaslynn Gallegos (Colorado), 15-7
7th – Joanne Ortiz (Connecticut) fall Leah Olsen (Washington), 1:16

112 pounds
1st – Alisha Howk (Wisconsin) dec. Autumn Gordon (Ohio), 10-8
3rd – Viktorya Torres (Washington) dec. Stefana Jelacic (Arizona), 6-4
5th – Kierstien Bush (Utah) tech. fall Gabrielle Skidmore (Wisconsin), 16-6
7th – Peyton Prussin (Nevada) dec. Kasey Baynon (Georgia), 12-8

117 pounds
1st – Alleida Martinez (California) dec. Cameron Guerin (Washington), 6-5
3rd – Amanda Walker (Pennsylvania) dec. Ainslie Lane (Oklahoma), 10-3
5th – Sierra Powell (Virginia) fall Rory Coscia (California), 3:22
7th – Tiana Jackson (California) dec. Glory Konecny (Montana), 9-0

122 pounds
1st – Gracie Figueroa (California) fall Kourtney Boehm (Colorado), 2:28
3rd – Payton Stroud (Washington) dec. Cheyenne Sisenstein (New York), 11-6
5th – Marisol Nugent (Maine) dec. Sophia Smith (North Dakota), 7-0
7th – Kerigan Mckenna (Illinois) dec. Ashley Whetzal (Virginia), 6-2

127 pounds
1st – Macey Kilty (Wisconsin) dec. Ronna Heaton (South Dakota), 4-1
3rd – Brenda Reyna (Washington) fall Xochitl Mota-Pettis (Texas), 2:54
5th – Kaden Campbell (Colorado) tech. fall Kaylee Moore (Washington), 10-0
7th – Ashton Cadman (Wisconsin) dec. Shaina Murray (New Jersey), 12-5

132 pounds
1st – Alexandria Liles (Texas) dec. Breanna Douglas (Kansas), 6-1
3rd – Cara Broadus (Connecticut) tech. fall Jenna Garcia (California), 10-0
5th – Sarah Conner (Oregon) fall Joessie Gonzales (Washington), 1:59
7th – Jessica Sanchez (California) dec. Allison Petix (Nevada), 8-2

138 pounds
1st – Emma Bruntil (Washington) fall Jerzie Estrada (Colorado), 4:32
3rd – Olivia Demars (Oregon) tech. fall Mckenna Hutchison (California), 18-8
5th – Hannah Ramos (Wisconsin) fall Sariah Stewart (New York), 1:10
7th – Mattison Parker (Texas) fall Marlee Smith (New Jersey), 1:08

144 pounds
1st – Jayden Laurent (Wisconsin) tech. fall Alara Boyd (Indiana), 10-0
3rd – Grace Kristoff (Illinois) dec. Anna Luciano (Florida), 5-0
5th – Hailey Finn (New York) dec. Brooke Logan (Arizona), 6-4
7th – Mckenzie Cook (Alaska) dec. Julia Padilla (California), 6-0

152 pounds
1st – Alexis Gomez (Illinois) dec. Kayla Marano (Georgia), 9-7
3rd – Kiana Pugh (Wisconsin) fall Anatli Smalley (California), 0:44
5th – Lena Flanagan (Washington) dec. Kelani Corbett (Hawaii), 3-2
7th – Alexia Foca (New Jersey) dec. Brooke Holt (Illinois), 2-0

164 pounds
1st – Sydnee Kimber (Alaska) dec. Dymond Guilford (California), 10-4
3rd – Tristan Kelly (Colorado) dec. Hailey Cancelleri (New York), 8-4
5th – Olivia Robinson (Oregon) dec. Anna Castro (California), 6-1
7th – Korinahe Bullock (Illinois) dec. Bailey Dennis (Oregon), 3-1

180 pounds
1st – Marissa Patterson (Kansas) fall Jesse Kirby (Virginia), 1:23
3rd – Natalie Kemp (Wisconsin) dec. Jenny Adam (California), 6-0
5th – Emily Sandoval (California) dec. Kaylee Seabolt (Georgia), 8-2
7th – Nia Crosdale (New York) fall Isabeau Shalack (Illinois), 3:57

200 pounds
1st – Alexandra Castillo (California) dec. Corey Burton (California), 3-0
3rd – Bianca Rosales (Texas) fall Shalee Williams (New York), 2:56
5th – Taja Showers (Virginia) dec. Alyssa Marinaccio (Maryland), 14-7
7th – Kacie Rodriguez (Texas) dec. Kimberly De La Cruz (California), 7-4

225 pounds
1st – Arianna Cobian (California) fall Jasmin Clarke (California), 1:56
3rd – Lavenia Fotu (Hawaii) tech. fall Khadeja Ayers (New York), 10-0
5th – Shamiia Wells (Tennessee) fall Mariah Chanady (Illinois), 0:20
7th – Elizabeth Cervantes (Illinois) fall Samantha Apple (Missouri), 3:50